Would you like more information? Please check my Cruelty Free in Korea Page!
Where I’m from, in America, buying cruelty free is a simple choice. You can buy it easily (and oftentimes cheaply) from most stores. There is also an amazing amount of choice, something I desperately miss living in Korea.
Actually, for the first six months of my stay in 2012, I didn’t buy cruelty free because I thought it was a lost cause. But, all it really took was a little research and I could have found quite a few options from some of the most common beauty stores and large markets in Korea. I’ll admit, it’s even easier here in Seoul.
I hope this list helps you if you’re new to Korea, or new to cruelty free products, and wondering what you can buy that is not tested on animals-something truly shameful in this day and age. 😦
If you are not a cruelty free shopper, I’m not going to throw horrible pictures of tested animals in your face (you can do your own research) but I implore you to consider these alternate products which are of mid-range price but terrific quality. And I’m a picky shopper. Just a little change goes a long way!
The first place to start searching for beauty supplies, cosmetics and cleaning supplies is KARA | Korean Animal Right Advocates.
Click here to see their list of cruelty free products. UPDATE: KARA no longer keeps a list or English version website. I would like to note, however, I am disappointed by this updated list. There are considerably less choices than before and one that is glaringly missing is my favorite store in Korea, Beyond. I have emailed/messaged KARA three different times to find out why it was taken off the list and have not received any reply, another disappointment. My friend has contacted Beyond and they have assured him that they are still cruelty free so I’m really interested in knowing why they are no longer on the list. If anyone has information, I’d love to hear it. UPDATE: Beyond returned to the list before the list became defunct.
Cruelty free choices in Korea:
Organix, or OGX, is a well known company that can be found at the cosmetic giant, Olive Young, in Korea. It’s a terrific product. The moisturizers work very well on my dry tips and the smell is wonderfully pungent. I have probably tried all the different scents and types. They also have hair gels, hair oils and creams.
UPDATE: OGX Organix is no longer cruelty free because it sells in mainland China. Bummer.
I’m not going to go into my desperate home sickness for Target, where you can get so many products from Method. You don’t need to hear my bellyaching. I was just so incredibly happy two years ago when I saw that I could buy the body wash at Olive Young, and the cleaning supplies at EMart. I would love for them to start carrying the laundry detergent as well…but…beggars can’t be choosers.
This one is tough.
Method is no longer cruelty free after years and years on the list. I rely so heavily on Method, as do many people, but here’s the scoop, they have begun testing on water fleas called daphnia. So according to all reliable sources, like Logical Harmony, this is NOT cruelty free.
But, in reality, there is a difference between introducing a toxin into a flea’s water, a flea that lives for about 30 days, compared to the pain and suffering lab tested animals go through. It’s not cool, for sure. But, Method might still be an option for you if you also see the difference.
Ohhhhh, Lush. If I could marry a beauty company, I would pick Lush. I don’t know that there was ever a company that picked a better moniker. Every product that I have tried at this store, where you can find in many areas of Seoul like Gangnam, Itaewon, Sinsa, etc…, have been amazing. I even bought some items for my notoriously picky brother for last Christmas. He loved them as well. Men and women alike can be pampered by this company that uses all natural ingredients and free of preservatives. It’s a little pricey but their things last a while and you get what you pay for.
Aromatica is one of the few Korean companies that operate cruelty free. Again, you can find this product at Olive Young, which are every-where. This is a very well know Korean cosmetic company that is sold overseas as well and is often featured on blogs and articles about Korean beauty secrets. It’s a nice company using simple, delicate products. I use aloe vera gel all year long as a non-burning antiseptic layer after I shave to prevent bumps. Have you ever wondered why aloe vera gel is always sold in that weird green color when you squeeze aloe plant and get clear goo?? Lol…
A great company that is quite easy to find here in Korea at Olive Young and Emart/Homeplus at times, Freeman is affordable and reliable. I love their skin masks, especially in the summer when the disgusting Korean smog just sits on my face with the humidity. You can find loads of flavors and scents of face masks, creams and face and body washes.
Beyond! The company that I sing the high praises of because 1. they have EVERYTHING you could need for your skin, hair or nails, 2. they have so many locations, and 3. they have a full range of prices, from inexpensive to luxury. I love this Beyond face wash because I need foam and one that is not too moisturizing because of my oily skin. It smells great and feels refreshing afterwards. Everything I need in a face wash. Check out Beyond for a full range of products.
More coming soon! Plus more in depth reviews of particular products. 🙂